What Happened to Three-Quarter Zip Jerseys?

KevinF

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Certainly.

:eek:

When I lived in Virginia I would ride on Skyline Drive periodically with my friend Dawn. In the cooler months she would fish her windbreaker out of a jersey pocket while going over the mountain tops and put it on — while accelerating to 40+ on the downhills. Same thing in reverse at the bottom— we’d start uphill, she’s sit up and take her jacket off, fold it up, etc. I was in awe.
 

markojp

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@Rudi Riet had some recommendations for jerseys in the "Best Items in Your Kit" thread. That got me off on a bunch of searches. I was very surprised to find that 3/4 zip jerseys are very thin on the ground these days. I much prefer them to fill zip, mostly because they just lie a lot more comfortably over the crunched-up belly region when you're on the bike. Why do people apparently have a strong preference for full zips? What am I missing?

Anyway, anyone have a favorite jersey model or producer that does partial zip? (Note that I can Google with the best of them. I'm looking for first-hand experience.) Thanks in advance.
Tony, I haven't read the thread, but it sounds like you're looking for a race fit full zip. They're very comfortable riding and don't bunch up. I always have some stuff in my back pockets... no issues. Personally, I don't miss 3/4 zips at all. The fabrics are very cool. We have a good deal of up and down here as well, and yes, even hot weather from time to time.
 
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markojp

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You are missing two things
1) the preferences of the reduced-shoulder-mobility crowd who simply cannot get into a part-zip jersey unless it's the size of a XXL t-shirt.
2) the Nopinz & Bioracer-type skin jersey movement where the garment is too tight and too stretchy and too aero to do a part-zip on without needing a team of people to put it on you. Which in turn drives the rest of cycle fashion - and the proof is every jersey maker out there now does 'pro' fits.
I have 3 race fit tops.... no trouble at all zipping or unzipping while riding. None. Zero. Zip.... pun intended. I really dislike baggy jerseys. Weird having to wear an xxl though. They do run small.
 
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markojp

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My jerseys are between 2 and 8 years old. Let's even say that the 2yo one was NOS and is actually 3 years old. You're telling me there has been some kind of revolution in jersey zipper technology in the last couple years, and that jerseys older than that belong in the yard sale with straight skis and re-entry boots. Okay, I really am old and grumpy now.

What I actually suspect is that zipper technology on stupid-expensive $200 "aero" jerseys has undergone a revolution, and that the middle-class jerseys I'd be more likely to buy probably have the same old setup. Which brings us back to the 3/4 zip thing.

Bah. Humbug.
It's not hard to find closeouts on really good race type jerseys, just requires a bit of patience and striking when you find what you want.
 
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Rudi Riet

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Tony, I haven't read the thread, but it sounds like you're looking for a race fit full zip. They're very comfortable riding and don't bunch up. I always have some stuff in my back pockets... no issues. Personally, I don't miss 3/4 zips at all. The fabrics are very cool. We have a good deal of up and down here as well, and yes, even hot weather from time to time.
^^^ This!

I only buy full-zip these days because I'm a guy who sweats a lot (genetics!) and likes to be able to fully unzip on long, hot climbs. I'm a little bit taller than @KevinF and have no qualms about pulling both hands from my bars to re-zip.

And yes, the race fit full-zip jerseys are the way to go. The cut on these has a far shorter front than back under the (usually safe for a racer-type) assumption that your riding position will be fairly low over the handlebar. If you ever see pro racers standing around in their kit, you'll see the fronts of their jerseys are often quite short, yet when they're in riding position the back side of the jersey covers things fairly nicely (notably with bib shorts - i.e. the only proper shorts to wear, per my experience).

I still own a fair number of 3/4-zip jerseys (even in race cut), but these days unless the jersey is really compelling, it's only full-zip for me.

And speaking to @cantunamunch's comment about shoulder mobility issues, that's such a valid point. Those of us with trick shoulders have a far easier time with donning and doffing full-zip jerseys.

I'm not saying that there isn't a market for 3/4-zip jerseys. Some folks find the cut more flattering, others like that the whole thing stays together for laundering, etc. And there are some out there if you hunt around, mostly in club/relaxed cuts.
 

zircon

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Add me to the list of people who can't ride without hands on any bike. One hand is fine. No hands cues immediate tipping over. And I'm definitely the opposite of tall.

Anyway, I have a couple of newish Castelli Entrata (entry level, says so in the name) full zip jerseys that don't bunch uncomfortably when bent over. They're not super aero cut either so zipping/unzipping doesn't involve wrestling with elastic. Street price is like $65, sizing runs on the roomy side of Castelli. It is nice to be able to unzip it all the way.
 
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Tony S

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No one really answered my question totally convincingly, to my way of thinking. When a fully unzipped full-zip jersey is significantly cooler than a fully unzipped 3/4 jersey, it's because the thing was too stupid tight to start with. Nevertheless I definitely learned some things.

Anyway, I've let it go and am moving on. Washington area Pugs like @cantunamunch, @Rudi Riet , @JohnL, and @Jim Kenney may or may not get a kick out of this very light and comfortable jersey I scored on eBay a little while back. I liked it regardless. Yes, the fabric is very cool and the zipper is reasonably unobtrusive, if not quite as natural feeling as a 3/4. And the bird on the back is fun. :thumb:

20200612_121912-01.jpeg
20200612_121942-01.jpeg
 

Rudi Riet

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No one really answered my question totally convincingly, to my way of thinking. When a fully unzipped full-zip jersey is significantly cooler than a fully unzipped 3/4 jersey, it's because the thing was too stupid tight to start with. Nevertheless I definitely learned some things.
Umm, no - 100 percent, no. That's not why (and I love race fit jerseys - I hate jerseys that flap in the wind when zipped up). It's because sometimes you need to have more active wicking than the fabric can provide. Try living south of the Poconos and you really get how even the best wicking fabric with the best fit is still inadequate to keep you cool in the peak heat of summer. Climbing a long slog in the Appalachians with the summer sun and humidity bearing down on a rider, and having the ability to fully unzip is heavenly.

Also, bib shorts (which are the best thing ever) sit higher on the torso and add a little insulation (or girdling to those who like their cold, frothy post-ride beverages) and having the ability to fully unzip allows them to vent off excess moisture.

BTW: nice find on the RCCDC jersey! That's their launch design from when they first opened up shop here in DC.
 
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Tony S

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Climbing a long slog in the Appalachians with the summer sun and humidity bearing down on a rider, and having the ability to fully unzip is heavenly.
Yeah, I concede that. Hope I get a chance to prove it out this summer. The climbs within easy striking range of my house are generally never more than five or ten minutes, even when they feel endless.

And totally agree on bibs.
 

Jim Kenney

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@Tony S , you guys are cyclists, I'm just a plodder and don't own a real bicycle jersey. I use old golf shirts or just about anything, but cotton t-shirts.
I'm still out in Utah and I'll tell you one thing, I wouldn't wear anything colored black in the summer desert sun here. It must be refreshing to take a ride in Maine in comfortable summer temps, especially along the coast. Have you posted scenic photos from any of your rides? Would love to see some.

These are recent shots from a really fun county park called Dimple Dell near the mouth of LCC, but it's like a desert in the hot sun, snow melt is practically the only source of water here:
dimple dell wasatch view.jpg
dimple dell creek ford.jpg
 

cantunamunch

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What I actually suspect is that zipper technology on stupid-expensive $200 "aero" jerseys has undergone a revolution, and that the middle-class jerseys I'd be more likely to buy probably have the same old setup. Which brings us back to the 3/4 zip thing.

Bah. Humbug.
You're just not curmudgeon enough. Bump that bah quotient 3 fold and step up to completely zipless.



 

markojp

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My jerseys are between 2 and 8 years old. Let's even say that the 2yo one was NOS and is actually 3 years old. You're telling me there has been some kind of revolution in jersey zipper technology in the last couple years, and that jerseys older than that belong in the yard sale with straight skis and re-entry boots. Okay, I really am old and grumpy now.

What I actually suspect is that zipper technology on stupid-expensive $200 "aero" jerseys has undergone a revolution, and that the middle-class jerseys I'd be more likely to buy probably have the same old setup. Which brings us back to the 3/4 zip thing.

Bah. Humbug.
Don't know where you landed on this, but FWIW, I don't think I've ever bought a jersey that hasn't been at least 40% off. I have three aero'ish jerseys in the rotation and one less aero that's great for hot days. All full zip, none bind at the waist like the problem you've mentioned. Hopefully you've found an answer and are having a great summer getting some miles in. :)
 
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Tony S

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Don't know where you landed on this, but FWIW, I don't think I've ever bought a jersey that hasn't been at least 40% off. I have three aero'ish jerseys in the rotation and one less aero that's great for hot days. All full zip, none bind at the waist like the problem you've mentioned. Hopefully you've found an answer and are having a great summer getting some miles in. :)
For sure, bike clothes are discount-only purchases. Thus the eBay jersey up thread. ;)

And yes, getting out here and there. Nothing remotely ambitious. Been tweaking a new-to-me road bike and am pretty happy with it now.

Came close to riding with another Pug this week but Murphy's Law intervened.
 

markojp

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Cool! Whad'jya get for a new ride? Got some new hoops myself. First time out on them yesterday. Less time to ride now that the shop is open again, but I can't complain at all. :)

(I still want a wool retro jersey, but... $$$$)
 
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Tony S

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You're just not curmudgeon enough. Bump that bah quotient 3 fold and step up to completely zipless.
I'm just waiting for them to come out with shorts called "dessous".
 
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Tony S

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The level of French aptitude is probably pretty low for the most part... :ogbiggrin: Some of us were forced to take it in school...
@lakespapa would have been all over it.

I only know because of Burgundy vineyard site names. E.g., Meursault Charmes dessus vs. Meursault Charmes dessous. Upper and lower.
 

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I think of it more as underneath or underside..reminds me of Bridesmaids... Got that undercarriage thing going on.. :roflmao:

 
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